Neath Port Talbot County Borough
Bwrdeistref Sirol
Castell-nedd Port Talbot
Coat of arms of Neath Port Talbot County Borough
Location of Neath Port Talbot County Borough
Admin HQPort Talbot
Largest townNeath
 • TypeNeath Port Talbot County Borough Council
 • ControlLabour
 • MPsStephen Kinnock, Labour (Aberavon)
Christina Rees, Labour (Neath)
 • MSsDavid Rees, Labour (Aberavon)
Jeremy Miles, Labour (Neath)
 • Total442 km2 (171 sq mi)
 • RankRanked 11th
 • Total141,931
 • RankRanked 9th
 • Density322/km2 (830/sq mi)
  • RankRanked 12th
 • Ethnicity
97.9% White
1.0% South Asian
0.8% Oriental
0.3% Other
Welsh language
 • RankRanked 9th
 • Speakers13.5%[1]
Geocode00NZ (ONS)
W06000012 (GSS)
ISO 3166 codeGB-NTL

Neath Port Talbot (Welsh: Castell-nedd Port Talbot) is a county borough in the south-west of Wales. Its principal towns are Neath, Port Talbot, Briton Ferry and Pontardawe. The county borough borders Bridgend County Borough and Rhondda Cynon Taf to the east, Powys and Carmarthenshire to the north; and Swansea to the west.

Neath Port Talbot is the eighth-most populous local authority area in Wales and the third most populous county borough. The population at the 2011 census was 139,812.[2] The population in the coastal areas is mainly English-speaking, whereas in the valleys in the north of the borough there are many who are Welsh-speaking.


The local authority area stretches from the coast to the border of the Brecon Beacons National Park. The majority of the land is upland or semi-upland and 43% is covered by forestry with major conifer plantations in upland areas. Most of the lower-lying flat land is near the coast around Port Talbot. An extensive dune system stretches along much of the coast, broken by river mouths and areas of development.[3] The upland areas are cut by five valleys: Vale of Neath, Dulais Valley, Afan Valley, Swansea Valley (or Tawe Valley), Upper Amman Valley.[4]

Modern settlement patterns reflect the industrial history of the area, with urban development along the flatter areas of the valleys and some parts of the coast. Neath with a population of 47,020 is the largest town, followed by Port Talbot (35,633), Briton Ferry (7,186), Pontardawe (5,035), and Glynneath (4,368). The majority of the population live in the coastal plain around Port Talbot and the land around the River Neath in the vicinity of Neath. Many of the larger towns in the borough lie within the Swansea Urban Area.

Neath Port Talbot County Borough is at the western end of the South Wales Valleys


The population in the region reached its peak in the 1930s. Census figures show a population of 151,563 in 1931. The population has shown a steady decline throughout the rest of the 20th century. The population stood at 134,471 in 2001.[5] In the 1990s, most areas within the region showed a fall or little change in population with the notable exception of Bryncoch South and Margam where the population grew by 47.29% and 41.36% respectively. [6] Local council estimates show the population to have grown during the 2000s.

Government and politics

On 1 April 1996, Neath Port Talbot was created from the former districts of Neath, Port Talbot and part of Lliw Valley. The name change happened on the following day. At the time of the reorganisation, many local people expected that Neath and Port Talbot districts would become separate unitary authorities, and there were protests when the new authority was announced.[7]

Local government

The whole of the Neath Port Talbot area was once part of the county of West Glamorgan, which in turn is part of the historic county of Glamorgan. Since local government re-organisation in 1996, Neath Port Talbot is governed by Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council.

Neath Port Talbot is a staunch Labour stronghold, who have been in power since the authority's formation in 1996; although after the 2022 local elections, labour failed to retain control over the council after losing several council seats.

Welsh politics

The unitary authority contains two whole constituencies which are:

United Kingdom politics

Economy and industry

In 1991 Neath & Port Talbot was a distinct travel to work area (albeit with different boundaries to the current county borough), but the 2001-based revision has merged the locality into a wider Swansea Bay travel to work area.[8]

In June 2008, the economic activity and employment rates in Neath Port Talbot were below the Welsh average.[9] However, earnings for full-time workers were higher than either the Welsh or British average.[9]

Manufacturing accounts for over 22% of jobs in the county borough compared to under than 14% in Wales as a whole; just under 70% of local jobs are in services compared to a Welsh average of nearly 80%.[9] The Port Talbot Steelworks, operated by Tata, is the largest employer with approximately 3,000 staff (although in 1979 its predecessor employed 12,600); other large employers include General Electric, Hi-Lex Cable Systems Ltd (closing in 2021 [10]), TRW Steering Systems recently closed, Envases (UK) Ltd, Crown Food UK & Ireland, Toyoda Koki, Sofidel, Cornelius Electronics, Excel Electronics Assemblies, and Tedeco.[11]

Port Talbot is also the site for Neath Port Talbot Hospital which is situated on Baglan Way, Port Talbot.


The local Neath Port Talbot Council is the education authority in the area which operates primary schools and secondary schools within the county. The local education authority operates 6 infant schools, 6 junior schools, 56 primary schools, 11 secondary schools and 3 special schools.[12]

Further Education in Neath Port Talbot is provided by a range of institutions. St. Joseph's Catholic School & Sixth Form Centre in Port Talbot and Ysgol Gyfun Ystalyfera have traditional sixth form settings. NPTC Group operates from several sites within the county borough. The largest sites are located in Neath, Port Talbot and Pontardawe.[13]

The first dedicated higher education site in Neath Port Talbot opened in 2015 when Swansea University opened its science and innovation campus in Crymlyn Burrows.

The University of South Wales has a campus located at Baglan Energy Park in Port Talbot. The Baglan campus houses a Renewable Hydrogen Research and Development Centre.


A separate daily edition of the South Wales Evening Post is published for the Neath Port Talbot area. The paper's publisher, Reach plc, also produces a free weekly paper, the Neath Port Talbot Courier, which is inserted in Thursday's edition of the South Wales Evening Post.[14] The local council publishes a quarterly, Community Spirit, produced and funded in conjunction with seven other public sector partners.[15]

Community radio station is XS broadcasts to both Neath (97.4) and Port Talbot (107.9). Nation Radio Wales briefly broadcast to the wider South Wales region from studios in Neath, but is now based in Cardiff. The county borough is within the local commercial radio licence areas for the CHR-formatted station The Wave, its Classic Hits sister station Greatest Hits Radio South Wales and the Adult Contemporary-orientated Easy Radio. Neath Port Talbot is also within the licence area of Heart South Wales, available via the Swansea Bay area's 106.0 FM frequency.[16]


See also: List of twin towns and sister cities in the United Kingdom

Neath Port Talbot used to be twinned with:[17]

In 2015, Neath Port Talbot terminated all its twin city relationships for financial reasons.[19][20]

Places of interest

Freedom of the Borough

The following people and military units have received the Freedom of the Borough of Neath Port Talbot.

This list is incomplete; you can help by adding missing items. (March 2020)


Military Units


See also


  1. ^
  2. ^ "Local Authority population 2011". Retrieved 11 April 2015.
  3. ^ "Neath Port Talbot Supplementary Planning Guidance - Landscape" (PDF).
  4. ^ "Visit Neath Port Talbot: Valleys and Vales".
  5. ^ "Neath Port Talbot District: Total Population". A Vision of Britain Through Time. University of Portsmouth - Department of Geography. 2004–2008. Archived from the original on 2009-04-26. Retrieved 2008-08-07.
  6. ^ "Population Change". 2001 Census. Neath Port Talbot county Borough Council. 2003. Retrieved 2008-08-07.
  7. ^ The Welsh Academy Encyclopedia of Wales. Cardiff: University of Wales Press 2008
  8. ^ "National Statistics, Introduction to the 2001-based Travel-to-Work Areas" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2009-05-27.
  9. ^ a b c "Neath Port Talbot Council".
  10. ^ "125 Jobs to go at Port Talbot site". BBC News. 16 October 2019.
  11. ^ "Neath Port Talbot Council".
  12. ^ "Find a school".
  13. ^ "Home - NPTC Group of Colleges - more than just an education". NPTC Group of Colleges.
  14. ^ "Senedd Cymru | Welsh Parliament".
  15. ^ "Neath Port Talbot Council".
  16. ^ "Radio Station Licence Areas - Ofcom". Archived from the original on 2009-04-25. Retrieved 2009-03-25.
  17. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "Neath Port Talbot Twin Towns". Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council. Archived from the original on 2013-08-22. Retrieved 2016-09-11.
  18. ^ "Atlas français de la coopération décentralisée et des autres actions extérieures". Délégation pour l’Action Extérieure des Collectivités Territoriales (Ministère des Affaires étrangères) (in French). Archived from the original on 2013-07-01. Retrieved 2013-08-22.
  19. ^ cf/kis (17 February 2016), "Kein Geld mehr in der Kasse: Port Talbot beendet Städtepartnerschaft", Heilbronner Stimme (in German)
  20. ^ Twinning Arrangements within Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council (PDF) (Report). Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council. 19 February 2015. Retrieved 11 September 2016.
  21. ^ "Lloyd George Receiving the Freedom of the Borough of Neath, c.1920 | Art UK".
  22. ^ "Sheen granted home town 'freedom'". May 30, 2008 – via
  23. ^ "Bonnie Tyler becomes freeman of Neath Port Talbot". BBC News. March 12, 2011.
  24. ^ a b c "Wizards Chairman to receive freedom of The Borough | Ospreys".
  25. ^ "Neath Port Talbot residents salute troops". WalesOnline. April 1, 2009.

51°38′44″N 3°44′42″W / 51.64556°N 3.74500°W / 51.64556; -3.74500